My Favorite Things - Makeup Brushes
I’ve heard the saying, “an artist is only as good as their tools,” and when it comes to makeup brushes, I’d venture to say there is definitely some truth to that. On the blog today, I’ve carefully curated a list of 12 of my favorite makeup brushes that I use on the daily and in my professional makeup artist kit.
So what does it take to make my list? I love brushes that serve dual purposes. Who doesn’t love getting more bang for their buck? I also rely heavily on quality. Because I wash my brushes so often (after every client and once every 1-2 weeks for my personal brushes), I need brushes that can stand up to extra wear and tear. While I do have many other brushes, I find myself reaching for these 12 brushes most often to create a blended, nearly effortless look. Of course, individual preference and types of products used are big factors for what makes a good brush, so what works for me, might not work as well for someone else. It is also important to take care of your little brush babies! I like to store mine upright in a cup from the Dollar Store, and am sure to wash my personal brushes often (every 1-2 weeks using a mild dish soap or Dr. Bronner’s Castile soap). Makeup residue and bacteria can build up quickly on your brushes, so keeping your brushes clean will not only help them last longer, but is also healthier for your skin!
Morphe 505 ($7) Tapered Blender
This is always the first brush I use when applying eyeshadow once I’ve primed my lid. It’s tapered and fluffy at the same time, which is ideal for applying and blending a transition shade into the crease.
Bdellium Tools 776 ($9) Blending
I love this brush because it allows me to place eyeshadow on all or part of my lid and blend it out. It’s a great dupe for the classic MAC 217, and I actually prefer it because it has slightly less taper on the end for easier blendability.
Morphe M421 ($4) Mini Concealer
Speaking of MAC, years ago I was obsessed with the MAC 242 brush (I mean, wasn’t every makeup lover?). However, since finding this inexpensive alternative, I haven’t even reached for my MAC brush! This brush is categorized as a concealer brush, but I use it for applying my favorite shimmery shades in the inner corner and beyond. It picks up a perfect amount of product and applies effortlessly onto the lid. I like to spray it with a bit of setting spray before applying shadow to my lid to get that extra pop of shimmer. If you prefer a larger shader brush check out the Bdellium Tools 773.
Bdellium Tools 714 ($8) Flat Definer
A flat definer brush can be used for so many things: tightlining the eyes (top and bottom), filling in brows, applying/blending eyeliner, and more. Personally, I use this brush daily to apply and/or blend my eyeliner. This brush has not frayed a bit after years of use (and loads of washes!).
Bdellium Tools 762 & 763 ($8 each) Small Angle & Angled Brow
I’ve put these two brushes together because they are very similar in shape and use. Depending on the look I am going for, I’ll reach for one of these to create the perfect winged liner. The 762 is slightly smaller which allows for a smaller wing, while the 763 gives me the perfect shape and size of a classic wing. If you’re someone that fills in eyebrows with powder, the 763 is also the perfect size for creating natural looking brow strokes. Same as the 714, these brushes have not frayed a bit after years of use (and regular washes), which is mega important for applying a sharp eyeliner!
Bdellium Tools 780 ($9) Pencil
This user-friendly pencil brush is just that, super user-friendly! I love that it tapers at the end to give a bit of a shaper line, yet still has the blendability of a larger, fluffier brush. I use this daily to blend my lower lash line, and to add a pop of highlight to my inner corner (it’s the perfect size). I also use this brush if I’m doing a halo smokey eye and need to apply a dark shade to the inner corner.
Bdellium Tools 953 ($15) Duet Fiber Foundation
This brush is my every day foundation brush. As someone that uses liquid foundation, I need a brush that will apply a generous amount of product while blending smoothly and seamlessly. This brush is small enough so that it can fit under my eye, yet large enough that I don’t take several minutes to apply and then blend foundation. If you prefer a larger, more dense foundation brush, try the Sigma F80 Flat Top Kabuki Brush.
I love blending concealer under my eyes with a BeautyBlender. I have tried a few other beauty sponges and I always come back to the original. It blends concealer and foundation together so well, I honestly haven’t found a brush that can give the same effect. Words of caution, because the BeautyBlender is a literal sponge, here are a few tips:
it’s best used damp, so wet it and then squeeze out excess water
it will soak up product, so I prefer to use it to blend instead of apply product, that way I lose less
you can use the BeautyBlender with powders (such as setting powders), but use powders sparingly on the sponge as it will get cakey if there is too much
remember to wash it thoroughly and regularly
Bdellium Tools 980 ($19) Large Powder
In all honesty, my favorite bronzer brush is no longer available. It was a Sonia Kashuk brush and any name/number that was once on the handle is long gone (thanks Target). A close second is this 980 brush. I am someone that prefers a blended out bronzer look as opposed to a stark contour line, so this fluffy brush is perfect for allowing me to bronze my cheeks, forehead, and chin. I also prefer using powder bronzer, so if you opt for cream, this brush may not be a good fit. If you like to create a sharp, contoured look, try the e.l.f. Complexion Brush.
I use this brush daily for powder blush application. I love the size and shape because it lets me apply blush to the apples of my cheeks and blend easily.
Bdellium Tools 944 ($15) Tapered Contour
This is my go to cheekbone highlight brush. Because of its length, I am able to blend highlight into my blush, or be more precise and leave it just on the highpoint of my cheekbones.
Thank you for taking the time to read “My Favorite Things - Makeup Brushes.” I hope you found my list of go-to makeup brushes helpful.
Huge thank you to Julia and Ken (of JandK Photography) for these fabulous images!
What are some of your favorite brushes? Comment below!